Thursday, March 12, 2009

Queen Elizabeth

Before I watched “Elizabeth” the movie, I really have no idea what the movie is all about. But, after I have watched, I realized that I know who Elizabeth is. She is King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn’s daughter. Anne Boleyn was executed because she was found guilty of treason. For that, Elizabeth was called a “bastard” and sent away from the kingdom. But after King Henry’s death, Elizabeth was coronated to be the Queen because King Henry VIII had no son and she was the next to the throne. I get to know about this story through watching Tudors and my classmate, Azhar Khan’s explanations. He is really good at the history of King Henry.

The movie is really interesting and I really love it. I was disappointed at first when halfway through the movie, Dr. Edwin forbid us from watching anymore because of some problem. I was really upset that I did not manage to finish watching the ending. But, luckily, kind hearted Dr. Edwin lent us the DVD again to continue watching. I learnt a lot from the movie.

Elizabeth at first was unsure of her new role as a Queen. She had feelings towards one of her most trusted friend, Lord Robert Dudley. Lord Robert Dudley considered Queen Elizabeth as naive.

Queen Elizabeth Tudor who donned the English coronation in 1558 was a great politician who was not afraid of her power and knew how to use it. She learnt from her father’s history and knew too well how dangerous even a slight personal or political misstep could be. Elizabeth’s strength of character came from her survival of being the only child of Anne Boleyn, “The Great Whore”. Besides, Elizabeth was taught by the finest teachers to be a true Renaissance princess. By the time she came to her throne, she could spoke fluent Latin, Greek, Italian, and French.

Her throne and her country were threatened when the Spanish wanted to have a war with her. To my astonishment, Elizabeth actually joined in her army to fight the war. I could not imagine myself doing that if I were in her shoes. She was indeed a brave woman. With the help of her best friend, Lord Robert Dudley, she won the war and England gained peace and harmony for centuries.

The history says that Elizabeth lived and died a virgin. It is difficult for people to believe that Elizabeth lied and died a virgin. Yet she did. How do we know that? As the movie shows, spies in any court in Europe were common. It was their job to report what they see to their masters and much of that writing survives. No one ever wrote about anything more than rumours. We must also keep in mind that no one, not even the monarch, slept alone. There was always at least a servant sleeping in the royal bedchamber, no matter what was going on in the royal bed. Thus, not unlike our times, there were no personal secrets of any monarch could keep. And Elizabeth’s virginity was everyone’s interests.

What I really like about the movie is that:
- The costumes are pretty and unique.
- The dresses were elegant and intricate.
- The background of the movie is very beautiful.
- The real story behind the movie is an attention grabber.
- The characteristics of Elizabeth was shown clearly; naive, brave passionate and uncertain.

What is the difference between Elizabeth and other Plays such as Macbeth, King lear and Oedipus rex? Can you see the difference? Well, Elizabeth is a woman while the others are men. King Lear, Macbeth and Oedipus the King met their doom and suffering. It was what we called as tragic plays and a reversal of fortune. For Elizabeth on the other hand, it was not a tragic story, It was a comedy instead. Even his father, died without leaving any boy heir for his throne. Interesting isn't it? Isn't it an oxymoron? A woman can rule better than men.

I really enjoy the movie and hope to get to watch more of this kind of movies in the coming days. :-)

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